Canada: POLITICS: The First Circus

This year, for the first time in their history, Canadians will enjoy a show something like the political performance that the U.S. puts on every four years. Last week Canada woke to some unexpected facts: that all three major Canadian parties will soon hold national conventions, that the two big parties will choose new leaders, and that some months hence they will fight it out in a national election. Nothing like it has happened before in Canada.

Canada's Liberals held their first national nominating convention in 1919—before that, party leaders were picked in parliamentary caucus—and the leader they picked then has...

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